Combating Cyber Crime

In recent years, with the introduction of new internet-based technologies, cyber crime has grown at a rapid pace throughout the United States. Since combating cyber crime has traditionally been seen as an FBI responsibility, state agencies have not regularly taken on the responsibility. However, since it’s adoption in 2012, our own Utah Department of Public Safety’s Cyber Crimes Unit has broken from the mold. Simply put, this program investigates cyber crime by partnering with local departments as well as federal law enforcement agencies to prevent and investigate cyber crime.

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With the recent success of the Utah Cyber Crimes Unit, many are taking note. In order to understand what a successful cyber crime program looks like, the Bureau of Justice Assistance tasked the Police Executive Research Forum (PERF) with conducting a case study. Last week, as PERF released that case study, they explained, “The Utah Department of Public Safety was chosen because it has built a robust program over the past 4 years that involves conducting cyber crime investigations, analyzing cyber intelligence, and studying the ramifications of cyber crimes on emergency management and critical infrastructure.”

The “Utah Model” is now being shared with agencies across the country. We have recently been advised that 11 other agencies have already followed the model as a result of the innovative project of the Utah Department of Public Safety. After the release of the study, Governor Gary R. Herbert stated, “I commend Commissioner Keith Squires and Major Brian Redd of the Utah Department of Public Safety for developing cybercrime capabilities worth modeling.”

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